I started searching for as many self-improvement resources as I could get my hands on as well as sales books so that I could further develop my craft.
Day in and day out, I sacrificed as much sleep as I could and used that time to download information to my mind.
One day a friend of mine gave some hypnosis cd’s that were designed to help me become a better communicator.
Honestly I thought it was a bunch of crap so I put them to side for a while.
I thought hypnosis was complete BS.
People on stage being put into a trance and clucking like chickens?
Come on…gimme a break.
So I kept on trucking….
Reading sales book after sales book.
Learning technique after technique.
But I kept running into an issue.
Every time I would try a sales technique on someone it would seem to backfire causing the prospect to get annoyed and leave.
And it felt very un-natural.
So instead I would resort back to my default mannerism of just being a nice guy and keeping things conversational.
And while that worked better than trying to use hardcore sales techniques it still wasn’t good enough because people were walking out the door without buying anything.
I was missing that magic element that brings the technique together with the conversational tone.
As I started reading and learning more about communication strategies I came across NLP.
I quickly learned that Dr. Richard Bandler and John Grinder (the creators of NLP) built the world-renowned Milton Model of communication based on when they observed the “almost magical” communication powers of a hypnotherapist named Dr. Milton Erickson.
Erickson is known as the “father of modern hypnotherapy” and was arguably the most persuasive man in history.
Funny thing is he wasn’t born a “master of persuasion”.
He actually contracted the skill of persuasion as a result of falling very ill.
You see, at the age of 17 he contracted Polio.
He was so paralyzed that he was almost entirely crippled and couldn't even speak.
Lying in bed for months on end, his mind began to work overtime.
He noticed the significance of nonverbal communication among his family members and the physicians who attended to his care.
He studied body language, the tone of each person’s voice, and the contrast between verbal and nonverbal expression.
In addition to these insights, he also began to have “body memories” of the muscle movements he used to make when he could walk.
As he concentrated on these memories, he began to slowly recover the use of his upper body so he could talk and use his arms again.
He gave himself a super-human goal.
He planned a daring 1,000- mile canoe trip to build up his arm and leg muscles once again.
His adventure was exciting and challenging and when he came back, he was able to walk again with the use of a cane.
He used self-hypnosis throughout his life to enable him to beat back the pain and lack of mobility associated with his life-threatening bout with polio.
Over a career spanning 50 years he researched the connection between hypnosis and suggestion.
Erickson was an innovative thinker, he developed theories that were radically different from the hypnotic techniques used by the psychoanalysts of his time.
Unlike a session where the subject lies on a couch in a passive state while the hypnotist takes him or her into the trance of hypnosis and then offers suggestions..
An Ericksonian session would have emphasized the conversation, interaction, and rapport between patient and subject.
He used the patterns of conversational hypnosis that he developed to help his patients tap into the resources of their own unconscious minds to uncover the tools they needed for change.